December 08, 2005


HushPuppies.jpg Willie Drye, author of Storm of the Century: The Labor Day Hurricane of 1935, saw the previous post about the priapic hush puppy and wrote in from Side Salad's North Carolina Weather Bureau to defend the honor of the delicious southern delicacy:

Sent: Wednesday, December 07, 2005 5:29 PM
Subject: deformed hush puppies

Hey Jeff:

Hush puppies are a delicacy here in North Carolina. They are not trifles. They are the gestalt-like result of what happens when you take corn meal dough and dunk it in a deep fryer. The result is not to be believed, i.e. the taste of a properly cooked hush puppy makes it hard to believe that it's just deep-fried cornmeal, i.e., the sum (that is, the taste) is greater than the parts (cornmeal, deep fried), so it's a gestalt thing. How could such simple fare -- deep-fried cornmeal -- taste so good? I don't know. It just does.

Maybe the inventor of the hush puppy was divinely inspired, so maybe the hush puppy is a true miracle. Maybe priests and pastors should start offering hush puppies with communion instead of wafers. If they did, I'd probably show up in church more often.

Some folks down in St. Mark's, Fla., (Gulf Coast, south of Tallahassee) claim they invented the hush puppy, but I've heard stories about Confederate soldiers making a cornmeal batter and then using their bayonets to dunk the batter in sizzling fat, and the result was called sloosh. Maybe sloosh was the ancestor of the hush puppy.

Hush puppies are the perfect accompaniment to North Carolina-style chopped barbecue, which is so good I don't think there's a doctor on the planet who could make me stop eating it, I don't care what my cholesterol count might be.

If that slightly deformed hush puppy had landed on my plate, the only thought that would have flashed through my mind before I popped it into my mouth would have been something like, "Oh, boy! A little extra!"

So I suggest you use that hush puppy the way it was intended to be used and eat it. They're good even when they're cold and two or three days old.



So noted, Willie. So noted.

Posted by Jeff at December 8, 2005 12:36 AM

It may or may not make Willie feel better to know that I'm a Tarheel myself, and that I'd already consumed a litter of seven hush puppies along with my (gigantic) chopped pork sandwich before I happened upon the well-endowed morsel of batter-fried goodness. If there was any chance I COULD have eaten the little sucker without triggering an immediate and gruesome evacuation of the entire contents of my stomach, our colleagues would've had to settle for photographic evidence alone.

Posted by: Rommie at December 9, 2005 02:21 AM
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